The 18th Global Forum on Human Settlements is to be held in Dubai

443 Last modified by the author on 15/08/2023 - 03:21
The 18th Global Forum on Human Settlements is to be held in Dubai

On an urban planet, the global population has reached 8 billion, with 4.5 billion living in urban areas; cities are the engines for development, innovation and interaction and are on the front line of fulfilling our promises and meeting various challenges. We urgently need to accelerate the transition to green, equitable, smart and sustainable cities.

We must continue to improve the way we plan, invest, build, manage cities, and move towards the city we need through developing innovative governance structures and effectively planning and managing urban space. We need to make the most of the digital revolution and the power of science and technology, shape a future energy system that is clean, smart, equitable and renewable, and make communities and cities greener and smarter.

We need to synergistically accelerate decarbonization and decoupling in cities, promote compact urban forms and nature-positive solutions, provide people-oriented and pedestrian-friendly public spaces, promote green lifestyles, develop zero-carbon and zero-waste buildings, communities, industrial parks and cities, thus promoting the harmonious coexistence between man and nature, strengthening social inclusion and solidarity, and enhancing general prosperity and well-being. We affirm that transformative action by cities will surely scale from the local to the global, making a significant contribution to the delivery of the SDGs and the 1.5°C climate goal. 

The 28th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28) will be convened in Dubai from November 30 to December 12. It is against this important backdrop that the Eighteenth Annual Session of Global Forum on Human Settlements (GFHS 2023), one of the most important conferences worldwide focusing on sustainable cities and human settlements, is scheduled to take place on December 3rd alongside COP28 in Dubai, with the theme being “Green, Fair and Smart Urban Transformation: Synergistically Accelerating 1.5°C Goal and SDGs”.

GFHS 2023 will be co-organized by Global Forum on Human Settlements (GFHS), World Meteorological Organization (WMO), United Nations Centre for Regional Development (UNCRD), and International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), in collaboration with United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), World Economic Forum (WEF), World Wildlife Fund (WWF), International Ocean Institute (IOI) and other international organizations.

GFHS 2023 will include opening ceremony, keynote speech, high-level dialogue, parallel sessions, conclusion and recommendation, awards ceremony, closed-door consultation, and study tour.

Key topics

1.   Green, fair and smart urban transformation: policies, technologies and practices

2.   Shape the future of energy: clean, smart, equitable and renewable

3.   Smart green buildings and vertical farming

4.   Early warnings for all to build urban resilience

5.   Sustainable waste management for circular economy and zero-waste cities

6.   Nature-based solutions for urban resilience and sustainability

7.   International Green Model City Initiative towards zero-carbon and zero-waste cities

8.   Rural revitalization and sustainable tourism

9.   Sustainable oceans and blue economy

10. International youth green ambassador

Sustainable Cities and Human Settlements Awards ceremony 2023

Global Forum on Human Settlements will present the “Sustainable Cities And Human Settlements Awards Ceremony 2023 (SCAHSA 2023)”, as one of the highlights of GFHS 2023 to recognize excellence in sustainable development practices and innovations and promote innovative strategies, technologies and valuable experience. The awards include Global Green City, Global Smart City, Global Human Settlements Award on Planning and Design, Global Human Settlements Outstanding Contribution Award, Global Green Model Community (Building), Global Model of Green Technology, Global Model of Green Economy, Global Model of Ecological Restoration and Protection, among others.

Invited participants

GFHS 2023 is projected to bring together 300+ participants, including senior officials from the United Nations and other international organizations, senior government representatives and diplomatic envoys, mayors of green cities, business leaders, well-known experts and scholars, practitioners in relevant industries, representatives of non-government organizations, outstanding women leaders and children, among others.


Dubai, United Arab Emirates
03/12 - 03/12/2023
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Sabrina He

Director for Public Affairs Department